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Transhumanism

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posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 07:52 AM
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Sorta' bionics on a massive scale? Rewiring the human body?
I don't see it happening, but perhaps I'm short sighted and
these profs know better. My thinking is that humanity can't
get along and we won't be able to focus on this with the
intensity necessary to make it happen. (not that I'd want it
to anyways)

www.courant.com...

Excerpt

June 26, 2005
By WILLIAM WEIR,
Hartford Courant Staff Writer

Sitting in his office at Trinity College, James Hughes explains his vision of a
family gathering a couple of hundred years from now: One family member
is a cyborg, another is outfitted with gills for living underwater. Yet
another has been modified to live in a vacuum.

"But they will all consider themselves as descendants of humanity," he
says.

But as executive director of the World Transhumanist Association, he's one
of the leaders in a movement that sees, in the next 50 years, a world
where flesh fuses with mechanics and brains with circuitry. He recently
published "Citizen Cyborg" (Westview Press, $26.95), a book that has
made waves in academic circles and urges the need to prepare for this
future.

Transhumanism, a theory that has been kicking around for a few decades,
envisions a "post-human" phase where technology will bring us beyond
human capabilities. Intelligence-boosting brain chips, extended life spans
and even immortality are all part of this vision.

The movement has split into a number of factions, some of which take on a
quasi-religious tone...

More of the LONG article here -
www.courant.com...


[edit on 7/6/2005 by FlyersFan]




posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 08:04 AM
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People often take technology over death.

The transition is already starting with pacemakers and synthetic limbs (soon, bionic limbs). Artificial organ will be more common as technology advances. Eventually you'll see accident victims and people ravaged by time slowly replacing thier bodies with bionics. In our life time I doubt we'll see a full cyborg, but within the next 100 years or so I'd expect at least the first few.

Research has already created bionic sensory organs and electronic-neuro interfaces. Its just a matter of time now.

The "humans" of 200 years from now will only share our history and general brain structure.

Of course artificial intelligence is nearing functionality too. So its possible one day our species evolves into just "robots", some who were made, some who were born.

All this assuming we don't blow ourselves up first.



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 08:38 AM
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I agree with Quest the process has already started and it's not being called Transhumanism, it's called Medical Treatments
It's how it will all begin and when they become sofisticated enough these new mods will become mainstream. You know they have a Pacemaker for your stomach now to reduce your apitite? Extreme measures yes but it is not really necissary to do such a thing. Most Transhumanists don't even call themselves that, they mostly call themselves Disabled they are the ones pushing for research in this area and will most likely be the first to benefit from it. Hell in 200 years the Human race could still be around and a bunch of offshoots could be around as well, we could be seeing the start of new branches in the Human Evolutionary tree being born at this very moment. Some will choose no mods, some will go with pure Genetics and some will go with Cybernetics, and some of the more extreme ones will get their whole bodies replaced except their brains(which in itself will be heavily modified) And you know what? Those of us that are young right now have a good chance to see how this all turns out as radical life extension is looking more like a probability rather then a possibility. The future is going to be interesting and allot of what Transhumanists are talking about will happen within the next 50 years IMHO.



posted on Jul, 7 2005 @ 01:04 AM
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supposedly nanotech is going to be refined to the level of being able to make machinery in 15-20 years, so i figure, in 30 years well see some applications of it, maybe the ultimate cure, maybe no more need for plastic surgury to "augment" or "change" or just plain old fix ourselves. imagine, never having to use drugs again? no more groggy ness from pills, or what if they find out what is required to rejeuvanate our bodies as if we have slept for 8 hours, and have some nanobots working on all that while we are awake.. no more sleeping?

it will be like we have discovered fire again.

I just hope some nutjobs who hate themselves and the world, and somehow managed to get 5 PHDs and make lots of money, dont get a hold of the stuff ;p hhehehe our track records as humans is bad.. but thats a topic for another forum.



posted on Jul, 7 2005 @ 01:26 AM
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Most Transhumanists don't even call themselves that


Hmm, well than I'm one of the few that do.



I think that in the next 50 years we will see an immense change.



posted on Jul, 9 2005 @ 03:49 AM
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I for one cannot wait for such a future. I eagerly anticipate transhumanism to teh extent described in the original post. Heck - I'd even be a test subject if they wanted one!


Odd

posted on Jul, 9 2005 @ 04:23 AM
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this theoretical technology is fascinating, and i would gladly accept its introduction into our society... but that being said, the technology could be abused.

criminals with superhuman strength and speed, perfectly engineered assassins, and of course the ease with which any government could slap a sophisticated tracking device on every one of the people under its control... these things and others could be the darker ramifications of technological transhumanism.

there is no reason to let these possibilities halt our pursuit of this future, though... as long as we are ready and able to cope with the threats that are concomitant with any new technology.



posted on Jul, 10 2005 @ 09:10 AM
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I really believe once our lifespans are increased enough, we will have more respect for each other.



posted on Jul, 10 2005 @ 11:38 AM
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Care to explain a little more on that thought ?

Because I've met a lot of older people (maybe 70+) about 2/3's are as honest and loving as can be. But that other 1/3 are mean, angry-at-the-world ordinary people.

I don't think there will ever be a total respect for anyone. There will always be biased people and those who plain out don't like you.



posted on Jul, 10 2005 @ 11:46 AM
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imagine growing up in a society where your elders dont die.

new people = new ideas = dont like old guys ideas

old guys = eventually gonna have to change their mind or they wont be getting along very well with others, and wont find jobs etc

if we can live for hundreds of years, there will be no more retirements or pensions

you are right though, it is hard to predict what will happen exactly..... but when nanotech takes off....... every aspect of our life will change eventually.



posted on Jul, 10 2005 @ 06:43 PM
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lol reminds me of warhammer 40k(of course it all takes place 2000 years from now..)


[edit on 10-7-2005 by masterofpuppets]


Odd

posted on Jul, 10 2005 @ 06:54 PM
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the emperor protects!



posted on Jul, 10 2005 @ 09:51 PM
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I really believe this will happen over the next few centuries but as it begins I think it's going to lead to a lot of social/political conflict between those that embrace the technology and those that don't. I think if you look at the controversy over stem cell research you get a glimpse of the kind of conflict that will emerge in our society as these new technologies mature. These technologies are basicially going to allow humans to control their own physical evolution. Many people will see this as playing god and oppose it. I think it's going to cause a conflict that makes the abortion debate look tame in comparison. In 200 years I wouldn't be surprised at all if the major division between humans is not race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, etc..., but is instead do you embrace or resist transhumanism. Who knows, maybe some of us will embrace the technology and decide to leave our more "primitive" brethern behind us and make a new life for ourselves some where else.

[edit on 10-7-2005 by Delta 38]



posted on Jul, 10 2005 @ 10:08 PM
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I feel like it can be very good in some ways, and horrifying in others. Kevin (I can't think of his last name) of Sun Microsystems my very well be right to greatly fear a world of nano and AI....at what point do the machines take control? Where do you draw the line between human/machine? Do you believe in a soul? All these questions, and many more, will need to be pondered by better minds than mine.....but I find it so very, very interesting!! I can see both sides so easily...one side is exciting, and one is scary....



posted on Jul, 13 2005 @ 12:33 PM
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Why think in extremes? Technology usually encompasses things from both categories and the Future will probably fall right in the middle of everyones wild theories of whats to come. Some things are pretty much guanteed and some things are not. AI is not guanteed at this point as we don't even know the WHAT? and HOW? of self-awareness and if we do crack it and make the machines intelligent why assume they are gonna take over? Hollywood has been beating it into our heads that AI = Evil and never really tells the story of HOW they became Evil too our perspective. It could be a sense of fear on our part that lead to us treating them little more then slaves and they rose up and made US their slaves(or just wipe us out for good measure) Also consider another point, what makes people think that if there would be a war between AI and US that we would be pushovers? We are moving steadily towards improving our own bodies, that is what Transhumanism is all about! In the future I see several distinct lifeforms
1. Normals(Regular Humans who shun enhancement technology, may even hate it for some Theological Reasioning)
2. Genetically Engineer or GE People
3. Cyborgs with a healthy dose of GEs
4. AI enhanced Cyborgs sort of a 2 for 1 special
5. Self Aware AI Inhabiting an artifical body
6. Self Aware AI Inhabiting the net.

Who knows when each one will arise, but I know enough to make an Educated guess, Genetic Doping is a huge concern for the next Summer Games, maybe even the Next Winter Games in 06 as well, Cybernetics is still fairly primitive and doesn't really give many superhuman abilities ... yet. AI assisted Cybernetic Implants are around already in use in some very advanced Exoskeletol designs and "Dumb" AI is all over the Web today(you interact with one every time you use Google or any other search engine for that matter)

The Future will be full of Shades of Grey just like today, it will be more complicated for some a simpler for others...

[edit on 13-7-2005 by sardion2000]



posted on Jul, 13 2005 @ 01:01 PM
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Because we as humans always push things to the extreme. lol We never know when to say stop, because we are curious and want to know "what if."
This whole idea of making ourselves "better through genetics" is a very pretty way of saying eugenics, and it is dangerous ground to tread....just 50 years has paased since the holocaust and it's being talked about in different shades of gray....it's still eugenics no matter what you choose to call it.

AI...You could be right...it could turn out ok, but that's assuming we don't push it too far. The whole point of AI is to make computers like humans...with the ability to think, reason, and feel on their own. You cannot give them ALL of that without some consequences...it's inevitable. To be fully human is to have issues, and some of those issues aren't pleasant....anger, jealousy, control, etc. That was my point I guess.

It's all very exciting too though, and I can't deny that. I find it fascinating!



posted on Jul, 13 2005 @ 01:25 PM
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This whole idea of making ourselves "better through genetics" is a very pretty way of saying eugenics, and it is dangerous ground to tread....just 50 years has paased since the holocaust and it's being talked about in different shades of gray....it's still eugenics no matter what you choose to call it.


It's gonna happen wether you like it or not and it's going to be a very expensive service. Will it create a Gattica type world. I highly doubt it(at least World Wide some countries could go that extreme), will it unbalance the scales? Sure will! Look for the first Genetic Doping Scandels soon in Beijing. Just because I want a genetic-based cure of my ailments doesn't make me an Advocate of Extreme Eugenics via Elimination and Subjigation. It comes in many forms some of which I happen to agree with like Birth Control for one
Some I don't agree with, like Racial Purging(My people were caught in the Crossfire in WW2 in Poland). The ONLY way we are going to combat some of the worst Diseases we will have to go this rout. As for Arbitrary Enhancements, they should never be allowed pre-natally only post-natally. That is the difference in the way I want to go, pure Voluntary and not manditory state sponsored mass murder.

Genetic Doping next Threat



Because we as humans always push things to the extreme

Collectively as humans the extremes usually stand out of a sea of boring tech, of course people are gonna focus on the few extremes as always drowning out the obscure and usefull. That is if this current media environment continues the way it's going.



AI...You could be right...it could turn out ok, but that's assuming we don't push it too far. The whole point of AI is to make computers like humans...with the ability to think, reason, and feel on their own. You cannot give them ALL of that without some consequences...it's inevitable. To be fully human is to have issues, and some of those issues aren't pleasant....anger, jealousy, control, etc. That was my point I guess.


I doubt that any AI will resemble our thought patterns, outwardly they might do so in order to interact with us better but inside the machine could be more complex and dynamic then we think. We cannot program emotions as emotions are an emergent phenomenon learned through Hundreds of Millions of years of Evolution, such a Phenonemonon in Machines will most likely not be programmed by us, we don't know where to start!

I suppose we could replicate a Human Brain with Nanotech right down to the size but it would have our limitations(in an Achetectural point of view)

AI For the foreseeable future will remain quite dumb and extremely usefull. I would worry about the AI's that can't object and just do as they are told by god knows who.

[edit on 13-7-2005 by sardion2000]

[edit on 13-7-2005 by sardion2000]



posted on Jul, 13 2005 @ 10:11 PM
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The human mind will eventually be downloaded, and this means immortality, transmission, and a host of other things.

However, when you suggest drawing a line, you simply create tension on both sides. Its pointless to try and stem this because the line is drawn here, but it much farther over there and much closer over here.

Religion will die off. Its only a matter of time. It will not be a threat to the continuation of human evolution.



posted on Jul, 14 2005 @ 01:40 PM
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You say the genes should only be altered knowingly and not prenatally...I agree, but it won't happen...it's already being done- selective birth I mean - and on a large scale. Female babies are routinely aborted in asian countries (I'm including India and the islands) where births are limited and/or first born males are only wanted. They are already suffering the consequences of this with female shotages....Here in the US many women abort fetus' found to be defective via now common testing. These are just two common examples, but more is possible, and much, much more is coming.

Yes, some day I think we may be able to download our brains....where does your AI theory go then?
-



posted on Jul, 14 2005 @ 01:45 PM
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Originally posted by iori_komei


Most Transhumanists don't even call themselves that


Hmm, well than I'm one of the few that do.


Strange as I thought Transhumanists called themselves Extropians.







 
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